2000 Regular Session
To: Judiciary A
By: Representatives Compretta, Banks, Barnett (116th), Brown, Creel, Davis, Dedeaux, Eads, Fleming, Franks, Frierson, Gadd, Hamilton, Janus, Livingston, Malone, McBride, Mitchell, Moak, Moore (60th), Nettles, Peranich, Read, Reynolds, Robinson (63rd), Rogers, Smith (59th), Smith (27th), Smith (39th), Straughter, Stringer, Warren, Watson, Woods
House Bill 728
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTIONS 7-5-7 AND 7-5-301, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO PROVIDE THAT INVESTIGATORS OF THE OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL ARE LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS; TO AUTHORIZE RETIRING INVESTIGATORS TO RETAIN A SIDEARM; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 7-5-7, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
7-5-7. The Governor may engage counsel to assist the Attorney General in cases to which the state is a party when, in his opinion, the interest of the state requires it, subject to the action of the Legislature in providing compensation for such services.
The Attorney General is hereby authorized and empowered to appoint and employ special counsel, on a fee or salary basis, to assist the Attorney General in the preparation for, prosecution, or defense of any litigation in the state or federal courts or before any federal commission or agency in which the state is a party or has an interest.
The Attorney General may designate such special counsel as special assistant attorney general, and may pay such special counsel reasonable compensation to be agreed upon by the Attorney General and such special counsel, in no event to exceed recognized bar rates for similar services.
The Attorney General may also employ special investigators on a per diem or salary basis, to be agreed upon at the time of employment, for the purpose of interviewing witnesses, ascertaining facts, or rendering any other services that may be needed by the Attorney General in the preparation for and prosecution of suits by or against the State of Mississippi, or in suits in which the Attorney General is participating on account of same being of statewide interest. Investigators shall be designated law enforcement officers and shall be subject to the training requirements of the Law Enforcement Officers' Training Academy. Each investigator who retires under the Public Employees' Retirement System shall be allowed to retain, as his personal property, one (1) sidearm which was issued by the Attorney General.
The Attorney General may pay travel and other expenses of employees and appointees made hereunder in the same manner and amount as authorized by law for the payment of travel and expenses of state employees and officials.
The compensation of appointees and employees made hereunder shall be paid out of the Attorney General's Contingent Fund, or out of any other funds appropriated to the Attorney General's Office.
SECTION 2. Section 7-5-301, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
7-5-301. There is created within the Office of the Attorney General an Insurance Integrity Enforcement Bureau. The duty of the bureau is to investigate and prosecute claims of insurance abuses and crimes involving insurance. The Attorney General may employ the necessary personnel to carry out the provisions of Sections 7-5-301 through 7-5-311. Each investigator who retires under the Public Employees' Retirement System shall be allowed to retain, as his personal property, one (1) sidearm which was issued by the Attorney General.
SECTION 3. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after July 1, 2000.